There’s no prize for guessing what used to go on in the Old Mill neighbourhood — the name gives it right away. What not everyone knows, however, was that the very first sawmill was set up in Toronto all the way back in 1793. Without this mill, it would have been much more difficult to build the earliest houses in Toronto — or perhaps they wouldn’t have been built at all.
Prospective renters should be careful not to confuse Old Mill the neighbourhood with the Old Mill, a restaurant-turned-event venue situated within the area. The Old Mill is a significant landmark within Old Mill: it was opened in 1914 on the site of a former gristmill.
The Old Mill has received quite the makeover over the past 100 years, with visitors able to enjoy the site’s spa and hotel as of 2001, in addition to the existing event venue and restaurant. And while the venue has changed considerably over the years, those yearning for times past can still dance to big band music at the Old Mill Tea Garden, a ritual that’s now over a century old.
Old Mill may be a small neighbourhood, but it contains much more than just one iconic venue. Commercial strips do exist, however they’re few and far between. Instead, the majority of Old Mill is comprised of quaint residential streets, some of which are even made of cobblestone. Unlike dense, downtown Toronto neighbourhoods, Old Mill’s single-family homes tend to be predominantly detached, and most date back to the years between 1920 and 1940.
Residents living in Old Mill condos for rent don’t have to travel far in order to stock up on groceries. With a No Frills on Bloor Street and a FreshCo on Dundas, there’s plenty of choice in the neighbourhood. Other retail stores are situated along Bloor Street West near Jane. Here, residents can find everything from fast food and fine dining to bookstores and cafés. One of the most beloved places to hang out in the neighbourhood is the Humber Cinemas, a theatre that’s been around since the 1940s.
Old Mill was established as a residential neighbourhood in the early 1900s, 20 years after the mills in the area had been abandoned. During this early 20th century development of Old Mill, single-family homes were built and not much else. The neighbourhood doesn’t look all that much different now, as The Kensington at Old Mill Condos is the only condo building in Old Mill to this day.
Everything is about to change, though, as Plazacorp is working on creating Old Mill’s second condo in collaboration with Quadrangle Architects. Slated for completion in 2020, the high-density building will be divided up into approximately 200 units, and Plazacorp plans to incorporate ground-level retail space as well.
The neighbourhood may be situated far from the downtown core, but that’s precisely why prospective residents are interested in Old Mill condos for rent. The quiet York Crosstown neighbourhood is surrounded by natural landscapes including the Humber River and the parks that surround it, and as an added bonus, it also happens to be situated on a subway line.
Residents who prefer not to drive can travel around the city with ease by hopping onto the subway at Old Mill or Jane Station. From there, it takes about 20 minutes to reach the Yonge-University-Spadina line.
As for drivers living in the neighbourhood, major arterial roads like Jane and Bloor will come in handy for anyone moving about the immediate area. In order to exit the city altogether, drivers can simply head west along Bloor in order to reach the 427, or they can head toward the Gardiner Expressway via Prince Edward Drive South and Park Lawn Road.
The Locals: Nostalgic.
Code of Conduct: This is one neighbourhood where being resistant to change is welcomed with open arms.
What You’ll Find: Ballroom dancing in a historic venue.
What You Won’t Find: Condos — yet.
The Homes: Single-family houses and little else.